hardware and software for electronic music 
Kaivo

Virta

Sound-controlled synthesis and effects .
$89

Kaivo

Kaivo

Physical modeling, made accessible.
$129

Aalto1.3

Aalto

A patchable synth with an innovative UI and distinctive sounds.
$99

Soundplane Model A

Soundplane

The computer music controller with the
feel of an acoustic instrument.
Temporarily out of stock.

News

Friday, May 13, 2016
by Randy Jones

Virta 1.0.2 released

Version 1.0.2 of our favorite new voice-controlled synth and effects toolbox, Virta, is now available for download. This release brings the following changes:

  • VST version now comes as a MIDI-controlled effect, enabling Cubase compatibility.
  • improved graphics performance with OS X 10.11 (El Capitan)
  • changed preset loading to strip unused settings
  • fixed a problem with Reaper always passing through dry audio
  • fixed a problem with audio stopping at some parameter settings
  • brightened background color

Enjoy!

Monday, April 18, 2016
by Randy Jones

Artist profile: Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith

interview by Geeta Dayal

At age 29, Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith is a rising star in the world of electronic music. Her music was shaped by her years spent exploring the pastoral landscapes of Orcas Island in the Pacific Northwest, which led to a chance encounter—via a neighbor—with a Buchla 100 modular system. This, in turn, led to an affinity for the Buchla Music Easel, a unique, portable synthesizer invented in the 1970s. After several experiments with releasing her own material, her first full-length album, Euclid, was released in 2015 on the label Western Vinyl. Her new album, EARS, is receiving major acclaim; NPR recently raved that it "elevates the warm pulse of the Music Easel into the realm of the divine" and Spin wrote that Smith's album is "startlingly, richly fulsome, commingling the mysticism of Smithsonian Folkways LPs, IDM’s furrowed futurism, and the free fall questing of Laurie Spiegel’s 1980 landmark, The Expanding Universe."

Saturday, April 02, 2016
by Randy Jones

Using Virta in FL Studio

Here's a nice clear PDF and an FLP file that should explain how to get Virta humming along in FL Studio.

Virta in FL Studio
Virtatemplate FLP

Big thanks to Levendis and deathcomics here on the forums for putting together this info!

Thursday, March 31, 2016
by Randy Jones

Seattle Music Machines Salon meets again April 1

The second SMMS meeting will take place at Ada’s Technical books in Seattle on April 1, from 7–9pm. This is a monthly meeting for presentations and discussions about making electronic music.

I'm going to do a gentle introduction to Cycling '74's Max/MSP for the first hour, assuming there is interest. Then we can have an hour for open discussion and working on the web site and such.

Sorry for the very late notice on this month—been a bit slammed with the Virta release but I wanted to stick to the regular schedule.

If you’re interested in contributing something to SMMS, like organizational help, or a presentation of your own, there’s lots of room to do so, so please come by!

[http://seattlemusicmachines.org] has the beginnings of a website (thanks Bryan) and should be the place to go for info very shortly. There will also be a Facebook group soon.

Wednesday, March 30, 2016
by Randy Jones

Using Virta in Bitwig Studio

Thanks to Thomas Helzle for this very detailed blog post on how to use Virta in Bitwig Studio. It's not difficult to begin with, and this explanation with nice illustrations and clear directions makes it that much simpler.

Tuesday, March 29, 2016
by Randy Jones

Virta 1.0.1 is released.

This update fixes a problem with audio input for all DAWs on Windows. It is available in the "My Downloads" area if you have a license, and the demo has also been updated. The Mac OS version is unchanged from 1.0.0.

Monday, March 28, 2016
by Randy Jones

Virta 1.0 is released.

Finally the newest Madrona Labs device, Virta, is out in the world. I hope you enjoy it.

Please head to the product page for sound demos, demo plugins, and of course that handy green "Buy Now" button. Thanks for your support.

Tuesday, March 22, 2016
by Randy Jones

Virta ships Monday, March 28.

Here are some notes I took over the last year as I worked out different aspects of Virta, my new voice-controlled synthesizer. Virta was a set of ideas floating around since four years ago and a conversation I had with a producer friend of mine. He had been talking to another friend who we’ll call DJ X, a person whose records I liked, with a room full of classic synths and a head full of musical ideas, but who nevertheless said what he was wanting most was to just sing and vocalize, play around with mouth sounds, and have that turned into music. This got me thinking about pitch detection and vocoders, and spectral analysis, and modulars...

Monday, February 22, 2016
by Randy Jones

Seattle Music Machine Salon

The Seattle Music Machine Salon is a new monthly discussion group, open to all and free of charge. Each month we’ll have a presentation and a guided discussion on some aspect of making music with computers and electronics. Topics will include the practical and the not so practical: new software and hardware tools, compositional strategies, academic and popular styles of electronic music, its history and future.

Our first event is Friday, March 4 from 7 to 9pm at Ada’s Technical Books in Capitol Hill. Ada’s offers a comfortable, inspirational atmosphere, and great food and coffee. They are at 425 15th Ave East. Please visit their site at http://www.seattletechnicalbooks.com/ for more info and directions.

Everyone is welcome! This includes all ages and skill levels. The aim is to create a diverse group that will expand viewpoints and spark new projects. The only requirements are an interest in the topic and the ability to engage in respectful discussion.

March 4 presentation:
Randy Jones of Madrona Labs will demonstrate his new software instrument Virta, a patchable, sound-controlled synthesizer and effects toolbox.

March 4 discussion topic:
Seattle electronic music resources. What are some important foundations of the local scene for you? What are some less visible resources that should be better known?

Tuesday, February 09, 2016
by Randy Jones

Artist profile: Rastko Lazic




Rastko Lazic is a composer and improviser of electronic music based in Yangon, Myanmar. Through the magic of the internet, by which our shared love of weird devices and ideas about sound transcends time and space, many of his works made their way to Seattle. What's in them? A devotional attention to the basic qualities of sounds both found and generated, it seems, and a purposeful collection of digital and analog devices for focusing it.